The good folks at Hartlife NFP (you may remember them from Our Fair City, a show I’m very fond of) gave me some ahead of time access to the premiere of their new show. The first three episodes are out now if you wanna check it out–certainly I’d recommend it.
Stories about the Midwest are extremely hit-or-miss. Many conservative narratives rely on painting a hallowed image of small-town middle America as the mythical Heartland to which a Rorschach of “traditional American values” can be applied. The other extreme flattens midwestern states into a formless blob, at best unworthy of comment and devoid of culture, and at worst a roundup of bigoted stereotypes.
Unwell: A Midwestern Gothic Mystery has set its sights on finding the middle ground between those extremes. It comes with the benefit of an experienced crew: Chicago-based Hartlife NFP previously created Our Fair City, a post-apocalyptic dark comedy that started way back in 2011. Eight seasons of production have left them extremely seasoned in the podcast game, and in my experience, the team is both committed to progressive storytelling and extremely receptive to constructive critique.
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